Any successful teacher will tell you that there are strategies to teaching. You cannot just show up and read a book or notes to the class and expect great results. There are effective teaching strategies that can be used to help the students understand the material and retain the information.
Depending on the age of the student different methods can be put into practice in the classroom. Younger students will enjoy a lot of interaction. Show and Tell can be very effective in teaching about a topic or concept. It also allows the student to begin having some practice in talking in front of their peers about something they feel comfortable sharing.
Other options to use for younger children include centers set up in the room to teach about a concept or theme. For instance, set up a mail area where the students can write letters and put them into an envelope to insert into the play mailbox when learning about the mail system. Using a home living center helps them act out what they see at home and practice learning new skills in a safe environment.
As the student gets older interaction is still important with their peers, as well as with the teacher. Including the students in on a brainstorming session about a topic will get them involved in conversation. Role playing is a valuable method with older students. Even having the students take turns reading out loud in class, or helping to work out a math problem on the board can be useful strategies.
There are different learning styles, so various effective teaching strategies need to be incorporated to allow each child to learn in the way that best suits them. Some are auditory learners, so providing some instruction in the day that involves hearing the material said, or sung, will help this type of learner. Visual learners may need to see the lesson on a chalk or white board, or the computer. Then others will learn best by acting out what is being taught.
No matter the age of the student, different methods need to be applied in order to achieve full understanding of the material. Even adult students need to be exposed to various teaching practices to completely comprehend what is being taught, and to keep their attention. Media can be useful; however, it is probably best not to overdo the use of media in the classroom. Having a student learn how to think for themselves, create an idea in their mind and put it down on paper are still effective teaching strategies.